marine animals

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For some years one of the major problems of polar bears has been the dramatic reduction of their habitat, i.e. Arctic sea ice, during the summer time. The bears are thus faced with extreme conditions and must go inland, since the sea ice is retreating North too quickly. Argos PTTs enable the monitoring of seasonal habitats, as well as the behavior of family groups and single female bears.

Since 2010, the A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences have studied polar bears with Argos PTT-fitted collars. In 2018, Argos tracking revealed that females with cubs born in the year left their reproduction dens on land earlier than usual to spend Summer on drifting sea ice, near polynias and leads.

On islands, or continental coastlines, males and females with one or two year-old cubs are often seen trying to find meagre meals of vegetation, lemmings, eggs or chicks from nests… They look for food in the river estuaries or channels at low tides, in particular sea mammal remnants that have washed ashore. This is a difficult period for the animals, but most adapt to long stay on lands. The most vulnerable animals, who eventually die from exhaustion are solitary individuals aged between 2 and 3 years old who didn’t manage to adapt in time to living and hunting alone.

Track on Ice of four polar bears (credits A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences)
Track on Ice of four polar bears (credits A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences)

What did the use of Argos-fitted collars on Shokalsky and Vilkitsky Islands in June 2018 to study the migrations of two solitary polar bears reveal?

Summer Tracks of two polar bears (credits A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences)
Summer Tracks of two polar bears (credits A. N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution of the Russian Academy of Sciences)

This study showed that the bears moved intensively between the islands, swimming 100 to 150 km, looking for food all the time. For example, analysis of the activities and movements of the equipped female on Shokalsky Island shows that one day after being fitted with the collar, she investigated the Northern part of the Island. Then she swam towards the Yavay peninsula, and migrated from the Eastern coast of this peninsula up to the islands near Cape Peschany. After a few days in the area, she came back to the Southern part of Shokalsky Island. Later, this female was foraging in the North-eastern and North western parts of the Yavay peninsula, moving mainly along the coast, never going further from it than 1 to 2 km. Mid-October, she began migrating North, but waited for ice (formation) on Shokalsky Island. As soon as the sea was frozen, she swam towards the new ice, and went towards the high latitudes.

Complete track of the polar bear
Complete track of the polar bear
Track of one of the polar bear (2018/06/28, beginning of the tracking) vs ice in Argos web
Track of one of the polar bear (2018/06/28, beginning of the tracking) vs ice in Argos web
Track of one of the polar bear (2018/09/30, end of Summer) vs ice in Argos web
Track of one of the polar bear (2018/09/30, end of Summer) vs ice in Argos web
Track of one of the polar bear (2019/01/19, end of the tracking) vs ice in Argos web
Track of one of the polar bear (2019/01/19, end of the tracking) vs ice in Argos web

 

 

Juvenile male Hen Harrier with an Argos PTT (Credits Les Steele)

17.05.2019 Animal tracking applications Argos helps reveal that British grouse moors are dangerous grounds for hen harriers

Hen Harriers is a protected species of raptor living in Great Britain. Until recently, their behaviour and habits had been observed mostly at specific times and areas. Argos PTTs have enabled monitoring a wide variety of individuals over long periods and studying threats from recreational shooting. The historic ornithological…
king penguins

25.04.2019 Animal tracking applications King penguins: Long-distance champion

The research team at Centre d’Etudes Biologiques de Chizé (CEBC-CNRS) has been using the Argos system since the 1990s to study penguins on Crozet and Kerguelen Islands. One of the researchers from the team, Charles-André Bost, began using the Argos system in 1994 to learn more about the…

24.04.2019 Happy World Penguin Day from Argos

There are 18 species of penguins worldwide, living almost exclusively in the Southern Hemisphere. From the noble Emperor penguin to the smaller, Little penguins, these aquatic birds are extremely endearing and inspiring creatures. Argos satellite tracking has made it possible to study penguins not only in their remote and inhospitable (in…
Little penguins. Copyright Philipp Island Nature Parks.

23.04.2019 Protecting little penguins with Phillip Island Nature Parks

Phillip Island Nature Parks is a unique nature reserve, located on Australia’s Phillip Island, just a two hours’ drive from Melbourne. It is part of the UNESCO Western Port Biosphere Reserve and includes wildlife sanctuaries, wetlands, woodlands and coastal scenery.  Phillip Island Nature Parks has used Argos satellite…

23.04.2019 Animal tracking applications Establishing a marine reserve for Magellanic penguins

From 1996 – 2018, the Center for Ecosystem Sentinels tracked 459 penguins from Punta Tombo using the Argos system, shedding new light on home range, foraging patterns, and how climate change influences these animals. Data collected has been used to design marine protected areas in the Province of Chubut, Argentina.
Photo copyright: Malgorzata Korczak Abshire

23.04.2019 Animal tracking applications Understanding penguin populations on the Antarctic peninsula

The Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) was established by international convention in 1982 with the objective of conserving Antarctic marine life. The CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program (CEMP) was established to detect changes in the krill-based ecosystems, providing a basis…
polar bear

18.04.2019 marine animals Argos sheds light on polar bears’ changing summer habits

For some years one of the major problems of polar bears has been the dramatic reduction of their habitat, i.e. Arctic sea ice, during the summer time. The bears are thus faced with extreme conditions and must go inland, since the sea ice is retreating North too quickly. Argos PTTs…
Ocean Business

08.04.2019 Flash news Argos at Ocean Business in Southampton

The CLS Telemetry team will attend the Ocean Business trade fair in Southampton, UK, one of the UK’s premier ocean science and technology events, from April 9th-11th. Our teams will be present on Booth A12. Stop by to discuss your upcoming projects and learn about how Argos…
An Asian houbara equipped with an Argos PTT (Credits R. J. Burnside)

02.04.2019 Animal tracking applications Asian Houbara conservation

The Asian houbara is a bird highly adapted to its arid environment, with perfect camouflaging feathers and few natural predators. However, it is traditionally hunted using falcons in the Arabic peninsula, and with the increase of this hunting they are now threatened. Argos helps in defining a conservation strategy. A…

28.03.2019 Flash news Monaco Blue Initiative: Putting MPAs on the international agenda

The tenth edition of the Monaco Blue Initiative took place on March 24th-25th in Monaco under the presidency of HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco. This edition, like the previous editions, was was dedicated to Marine Protected Areas. The attendees supported ambitious goals for the protection of…